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Tax credit luring pre-Broadway shows to Chicago

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Photo - NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 06:  Cyndi Lauper and cast of "Kinky Boots" perform to raise ther roof at Fashion's Night Out with an appearance at Manolo Blahnik on September 6, 2012 in New York City.  (Photo by D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Manolo Blahnik  New York)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 06: Cyndi Lauper and cast of "Kinky Boots" perform to raise ther roof at Fashion's Night Out with an appearance at Manolo Blahnik on September 6, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Manolo Blahnik New York)
Entertainment,Associated Press

CHICAGO (AP) -- The new musical "Kinky Boots" enjoyed a pre-Broadway run at a downtown Chicago theater this fall thanks to a little-known tax break aimed at luring productions to Illinois.

"Kinky Boots," based on a 2005 movie, and new musical "Big Fish" are the first productions to apply for a certificate making them eligible for the credit.

The statewide tax break is worth up to $500,000 per production or a cap of $2 million a year for eligible pre-Broadway shows or long-run productions. Producers say it was instrumental in bringing the musicals to Chicago instead of elsewhere.

The credit is being offered as Illinois is mired in a financial crisis. Some financial experts are skeptical of the timing of the move. But proponents say the musicals are evidence of the credit's success.

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